16 Jan FLU
FLU: What families need to know about 2017-18 seasons?
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends annual flu shots
for everyone 6 months of age and older, including children and adolescents.
New research shows that the flu shot provided significantly better protection in recent flu seasons compared to the nasal
Immunizing your child is the best way to prevent influenza and the serious
complications that can result from an infection. Each year, on average, 5% to
20% of the U.S. population gets the flu and more than 200,000 people are
hospitalized from complications. At least 77 children died from the flu in the
Now is the time to get vaccinated.
Influenza vaccine shipments have already begun, and will continue through
the fall and winter. Call your pediatrician to ask when the vaccine will be
Infants and children up to 8 years of age receiving the flu shot for the first
time may need two doses of the vaccine, administered four weeks apart. It is
important that these children get their first dose as soon as possible to be
sure they can complete both doses before the flu season begins.
The inactivated influenza vaccine (IIV) is given by intramuscular injection
and is approved for children 6 months of age and older. Depending on the
number of flu strains it contains, it is available in both trivalent (IIV3 – two
A and one B virus) and quadrivalent (IIV4 – two A and two B viruses)
During the last three flu seasons, the nasal spray vaccine (the live attenuated
quadrivalent influenza vaccine, or LAIV) did not offer protection against the
predominant strain of influenza virus, and therefore it is not recommended
for use this season.
You can’t get the flu from the flu vaccine. Flu vaccines are made from killed viruses. Mild symptoms, such as nausea,
sleepiness, headache, muscle aches, and chills, can occur.
The side effects of the flu vaccine are mild. The most common side effects
are pain and tenderness at the site of injection. Fever is also seen within 24
hours after immunization in approximately 10% to 35% of children younger
than 2 years of age but rarely in older children and adults. These symptoms
are usually mild and resolve on their own in a couple of days.
There should be plenty of vaccine for everyone this year.
The flu vaccine may be given at the same time as other vaccines, but at a
different place on the body.Children with an egg allergy can safely get the flu shot from their
pediatrician without going to an allergy specialist. For children with a
history of severe egg allergy, your pediatrician may recommend you see an
The information contained on this Website should not be used as a substitute
for the medical care and advice of your health care provider. There may be
variations in treatment that your health care provider may recommend based
on individual facts and circumstances.